On November 12, 2021 – we gathered upon Kaurna Country at the Adelaide Convention Centre for the SA Woman Awards, to celebrate the achievements of women in business in South Australia.

Our Founder, Carly Thompson-Barry knew about the 13 Award categories, but got a big surprise to hear there was a new award for this year – the Founder & Legend Award! Which was proudly sponsored & created by Alinta Neumann from Macey & Me.

Head of Showcasing, Jess McEachen, took to the stage to not just surprise Carly, but to recognise, thank and celebrate her for the immense amount of work and effort she puts into SA Woman. The spontaneous and well-deserved standing ovation at the end took Carly the introvert by surprise and walking down the red carpet amongst is was not what she had ever expected to be doing!! 


Presenting the Founder & Legend Award

Hi everyone, I’ve just got one more award to present. This Award has been created & donated by the fabulous Alinta Neumann at Macey & Me. And, this Award is called the Founder and Legend Award.

We wanted to take a moment to thank and celebrate the woman in this room who is the reason that we’re all here.

Which clearly, is the one & only Carly Thompson-Barry.

She is the Founder of SA Woman, she is a legend and an absolute force to be reckoned with.

And – as you can see, she has absolutely no idea that I’m doing this!

Carly’s someone who is so understated about who she is & what she does, but on behalf of the SA Woman Dream team, I wanted to take a moment to make sure she has the light shone on her tonight too!

Jess McEachen took to the stage to surprise Carly with the Founder & Legend Award!

And, look despite the fact that I’m a copywriter – Carly is hard to put into words.

But, for me I think her actions speak so loudly & the ripple effects that those actions create sum her up beautifully.

Tonight is a perfect example.

Carly brings together women from right around our state. She celebrates them for being exactly who they are, and makes sure as many people as possible can see that too.

Carly a self-proclaimed passionate advocate for women supporting women, and she achieves that in spades.

And her grit. Her tenacity. Her heart. And, the fact that she just doesn’t give up.

It’s just so damn inspiring.

Again, tonight is a great example. It almost couldn’t go ahead when we had to change venue last minute – but Carly scoured Adelaide and was determined to make it happen.

Clearly, the last year or two has been nothing short of bonkers on so many levels. So challenging, so heart-wrenching, so draining. And I know that Carly has thought about throwing in the towel a number of times. And fair enough!

But she hasn’t.

She picks herself up, dusts herself off, and gets back in there to have another go.

To quote one of her posts…

“I’ll never stop falling – and tbh I hope I don’t, because if I do it means I’ve stopped trying.

I’ll also never stop rising up again, determined to do better each and every day.”

And what I love & what so many other people love too – is that she makes that journey public. She doesn’t sugar coat it & lets you in to the rollercoaster and that it’s not all sparkles and rainbows.

Now, for anyone who doesn’t know, the whole reason she created SA Woman was so she could hang out with others who got it.

And look what it is today!

In addition to a membership base of over 800 women, SA Woman is an absolutely thriving hub for thousands of women in business & careers to stand side by side and support each other through the complexities and challenges…as well as the celebrations & triumphs that come with being a woman in business.

So Carly – on behalf of everyone here tonight. Every finalist, winner & supporter. The SA Woman dream team. Every single one of our members. Every single person in our wider community who you help through your heartfelt posts & emails, your fierce determination, your entrepreneurial spark, and your absolute passion for making the world a better place for us all.

We say a HUGE thank you to you.

Because as I said at the start – we wouldn’t be here without you.

We all can’t wait to see what 2022 will bring for you and SA Woman. And the far-reaching ripple effects you’ll continue to create in such a vibrant, yet humble way.

Thank you.